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Sunderland boss warns his players heading into crucial Premier League run

Sunderland’s temporary boss Dick Advocaat has taken no time to warn his players about their performances, ahead of the Black Cats’ pivotal final nine games of the season, according to the Sun.

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The 67-year-old has developed a reputation for a no-nonsense approach, and he feels that that is the only way to get the best of out of his struggling players.

“I always say to players, ‘Listen, if you do what I want I am a really friendly man. If not, then I am not so nice’.

“It is that simple. It is good when they know that and so far I have been very friendly to them,” Advocaat explained.

The Dutchman was brought into the role after Gus Poyet was sacked following the club’s embarrassing 4-0 home defeat at the hands of fellow strugglers Aston Villa, who incidentally doubled their total away goals tally with the win, and the former Rangers boss expressed his frustration at the manner of the loss, suggesting that he may have been forced into making some bizarre moves, had he been on the touchline.

“I was very disappointed. When Aston Villa scored their fourth, five players were standing still.

“I told them, ‘If I was beside the line, I would have been on the pitch,” he added.

Sunderland currently just above the relegation zone in the Premier League, having won only once in their last fourteen games, and could fall into the bottom three with eight games to go, should they lose away to West Ham, and Burnley collect any points at Southampton.

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